tagNon-Erotic PoetryAn Ode to the Indonesian Hobbits

An Ode to the Indonesian Hobbits


(dedicated to Erika Jole)

These red-furred hobbits,
homo floresiensis,
lived on the Indonesian island of Flores.
They made tools and spears
which they brandished on valiant hunts
after tiny elephants and huge lizards

At night, they built bonfires
and had feasts,
performed theatric "poetry"
embraced comrades
glowered at rivals,
perhaps performed zagan rituals,
or listened to Zandel
blow primal water music through a bone pipe

Perhaps some Zicero
advocated for moderation in hunting
or exhorted in favor
of this or that virtuous chieftain

For until some 12,000 years ago,
their Eden never sank to grief
and perhaps never would have,
but for the maritime arrival
of larger Polynesian warriors
with better bows and spears
and no inclination to share the island...
or some scientists take the position
that it was a volcano

Barring this crisis,
and supposing the Stalinites and McCarthyists
had had their way in our Cold War,
the hobbits may have someday
sailed forth and settled new lands
and found in them amazing ruins:
umbrellas, huge skulls, and cola cans
scattered on the sands

They might have re-deified The Statue of Liberty,
made burnt offerings
built civilizations and robed kings
re-invented the gun
carefully mapped the globe and stars
and discovered the wonders
of reason, philosophy, and peaceful diplomacy

One memorable day
they might even have landed on Mars,
smacked golf-balls
and planted their revered flag
emblazoned with a lizard, spear, and elephant

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